The students started the tour with a performance at Carnegie Hall in New York City on April 1.
“Being at Carnegie was a dream and the support of the parents from Grand Haven was heartwarming,” said Orchestra Director Melissa Meyers.
The students then went on to Europe, where they stopped in Rothenburg, Salzburg, Vienna and Munich, Germany. Along the way, they toured a palace and castle, performed at an imperial chapel and at a cathedral, viewed gardens and historic sites.
“It was a life-changing experience of phenomenal proportions,” said Myrtle Lemon, a student and daughter of Choir Director Shirley Lemon.
“We were instantly transformed,” added Chamber Choir member Jake Jager.
Student Hayley Jones said the students filled churches in a foreign country with music.
“People came to hear us play, even though they had never heard of Grand Haven, Mich.,” Jones added.
Every student had something exciting to share about the “trip of a lifetime.”
“I had a dream that our incredible musicians could travel to a place where music is revered and their extraordinary talents would be celebrated and respected,” Shirley Lemon said. “To stand on the shoulders of giants and understand the tremendous ability of music to change lives. ... We came home with stars in our eyes and hope in our hearts.”